X-ray and MRI scans

Spine Xray

If you’ve ever been to the doctor for back problems, you may know the routine…X-ray images, MRI’s scans, and worse, the report you get back may be a bit confusing or worrying with terms such as ”disc herniations’, or ‘severe degenerative disc disease’…

What if I told you that these images could be potentially damaging to your health?

I’m not talking about the radiation from an x-ray, or the MRI procedure itself…

But instead, the misleading information, the potential psychological impact, and also the danger of having critical heal decisions made off the back of an image, rather than the ‘whole picture’…

A lot of questions may enter your head when you see the report… “will I need surgery?” “Can it get better?” “Is this how it’s going to be for the rest of my life?”

The goal of this week’s article is help you see how EVEN IF you’ve been diagnosed with ‘degenerating discs’ or ‘disc bulges’ that you can STILL get back to an active lifestyle without pills or surgery…

You see, of the hundreds of people I’ve had the chance to work with over the years overcome problems such as ‘degenerating discs’ or ‘disc herniations’, I’ve realized that there is MUCH MORE to your back, or your body than just simply what an x-ray or MRI says…

“How can this be? I was told by my doctor I’d need injections and surgery and that I’d have to accept it!”

Most doctors these days seem all to quick to ‘push pills’ and recommend surgery, instead of taking the time, energy, or taking their patients through the detailed process of diagnosing the root cause of the injury…

They often make rushed decisions about the long term health of your spine only off the basis of what your MRI might say, and often times are not considering the ‘big picture’…

Don’t get me wrong, I am not AGAINST the use of MRI’s, and the findings should NOT be ignored

I just believe imaging should be part of the decision making process…But I do NOT believe critical, and potentially life altering, dangerous injections or surgeries should be made ONLY from an image, without first considering many other important factors. 

What Other Factors Should be Considered?

  • Lifestyle,
  • Movement,
  • Nutrition,
  • strength,
  • flexibility,
  • DNA
  • Your chair,
  • Your bed,
  • Your sports,
  • Your past injury history,
  • Your pain tolerance

There are SO MANY OTHER possible ‘root causes’ of injury which could explain WHY you’re having problems, which are all VERY fixable, EVEN IF your MRI shows problems…

Take this example of two clients I worked with who’d seen the same doctor.

A 53 year old, health conscious woman by the name of Janet.  She exercised several times a week, ate healthy, made good health decisions, but she’d just tweaked her back during one exercise class…

But instead of getting immediate treatment she rested and waited…

6 weeks later when she’d seen the doctor she’d been diagnosed with ‘degenerating discs’ and a few ‘disc bulges’…

But her pain wasn’t too severe, but due to her ‘disc bulges’ and ‘degenerating discs’, the doctors told her to stop exercising since it was ‘hurting her back more’.  They recommended injections and warned of surgery down the line…

Now compare this to Alex, a 30 year old computer programmer. He wasn’t making smart health choices, he sat at a desk all day and hadn’t exercised in about 10 years.  His mobility was poor, muscles deconditioned, and his nutrition was garbage. Since he is younger,  his MRI was much ‘cleaner’, and since the “MRI” showed nothing severe, the very same doctor told Alex that the pain was ‘in his head’ and told him to see ‘pain management’…

But would it surprise you that Janet, was able to make a FULL recovery, and return to her ‘normal activities’ very quickly?

 

Even though her MRI showed more damage!

Alex, on the other hand, even though younger, had a MUCH more difficult time improving because of the environment he placed his body in each day.

Even though his MRI looked clean!

the takeaway is this…

taking a big-picture approach, looking at all aspects of your lifestyle, and using x-ray or MRI imaging to simply help ASSIST in making decisions about your health is a much safer approach than to make 100% ASSUMPTIONS ONLY based off an image…

If you ARE worried about recent MRI or x-ray findings, and would like to find out more about what can be done to get back to living a normal, active, healthy lifestyle…

Ask us about our free 20-minute phone consultation.  All we will do is have an honest, open conversation about your health.  We’ll listen to your problems, and help you come up with a solution that works best for you.

Click Here to Schedule a FREE Call-Back With a PT »

 

Kevin Mao, PT, DPT

Physical Therapist at Balance And Body Restoration
Kevin is an orthopedic specialized Physical Therapist, practicing in the Bay Area for several years.He and his wife, Thuy Lu, started Balance and Body Restoration to be a place where people can go to heal their bodies naturally, through a blend of science and a caring touch.
Kevin Mao, PT, DPT
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